Keep running

“We have to do that every time I visit,” I told him between breaths.

“Okay,” he said.

Even when fall morphs into winter. I don’t care.

We walked. Instead of watching my footing, I watched him. Each careful step, every glance around at the surrounding foothills. Meanwhile, I stepped in a puddle. He looked at me and laughed.

“There’s a puddle there, you know,” he said.

I just scowled at him and kept walking. But then I smiled and laughed at myself, wet right foot and all.

A left turn began our ascent and we climbed, climbed, climbed. The grass licked and tickled my shins, leaving its wet residue. And, even though the rain had subsided before our adventure began, I hit the tree branches with my hand, spilling the bright green leaves’ contents onto our heads.

He just laughed.

He always does.

I took note of fallen, slippery branches in preparation for our treacherous descent.

Four soaked feet and a heavily breathing black dog later, we reached the top. The trees spilled more droplets onto us there and he held me as we looked at the thick, broccoli-floret foothills.

Then the fun part.

We took off, running down the hill fast enough to be positively thrilling. My wet feet slipped in my wet shoes as they pounded on wet dirt and wet fallen branches. I stuck to the middle of the path, away from the manmade trenches on its sides. His steps pounded close behind me and I let myself go, allowing my legs to absorb each impact, only to keep moving and moving.

Faster and faster.

Around the bend avoid that stick stay in the middle of the path keep running listen to his heavy breathing focus Emily focus don’t roll your ankle lift the branch away from your head keep running don’t let him pass you move to the unsafe side of the path to block him keep running balance your breathing watch where your feet land feel the mud kicking up onto your back keep running.

Laugh with him.

Faster and faster.

Over two mud puddles in a steeplechase-esque jump, landing safely on the other side. Keep running.

I kept going. Everything else fell away and I focused on the ground in front of me. The path in front of me. The obstacles in the way. I took them as they came instead of worrying about them in advance.

He taught me this.

Just let it happen. Just go with it. Whatever happens happens. It is what it is.

Back on the dirt road, I bent over to catch my breath.

“That’s better than a lot of things,” I said. And I meant it. So we’ll do it every time I visit. Rain or sleet or snow or shine.

He smiled. He always does. And he probably said something that I can’t remember now. But then we held hands and walked back down the road, escorting dark blue storm clouds and welcoming them.

30 day song challenge: Day 1

1.) Your favorite song.

“Rain” by Breaking Benjamin

A friend has been posting songs on Facebook and I’m deciding to take part in it. Music means something to me, especially certain songs. I’ve written about “Rain” before on my blog, so as to not repeat myself, CLICK HERE.

 

Here are the other 29 days I will be tackling for the next month:

Day 02: Your least favourite song
Day 03: A song that makes you happy
Day 04: A song that makes you sad
Day 05: A song that reminds you of someone
Day 06: A song that reminds of you of somewhere
Day 07: A song that reminds you of a certain event
Day 08: A song that you know all the words to
Day 09: A song that you can dance to
Day 10: A song that makes you fall asleep
Day 11: A song from your favourite band
Day 12: A song from a band you hate
Day 13: A song that is a guilty pleasure
Day 14: A song that no one would expect you to love
Day 15: A song that describes you
Day 16: A song that you used to love but now hate
Day 17: A song that you hear often on the radio
Day 18: A song that you wish you heard on the radio
Day 19: A song from your favorite album
Day 20: A song that you listen to when you’re angry
Day 21: A song that you listen to when you’re happy
Day 22: A song that you listen to when you’re sad
Day 23: A song that you want to play at your wedding
Day 24: A song that you want to play at your funeral
Day 25: A song that makes you laugh
Day 26: A song that you can play on an instrument
Day 27: A song that you wish you could play
Day 28: A song that makes you feel guilty
Day 29: A song from your childhood
Day 30: Your favourite song at this time last year

An evolution of taste

I am currently uploading a few of my old CDs to my iTunes. Now I’m reminiscing about how my music taste has evolved. Care to join me?

The first song I called my “favorite” was “Pieces of Me” by Ashlee Simpson. I wanted her CD, Autobiography, so bad, but never bought it. Instead, I purchased Lindsay Lohan’s Speak, and every Hilary Duff CD available when I was in fourth grade. I danced around my room and sang into my hairbrush.

Jesse McCartney showed up in sixth grade. I bought Beautiful Soul that year and watched Disney Channel every day with hopes he would show his face. I died inside every time this music video showed during Disney Channel commercials: Because You Live

Avril Lavigne snuck in after that. Finally in eighth grade, a friend introduced me to YouTube. I went on to find this:

…and everything spawned from there. Flyleaf wasn’t far behind for me with “I’m So Sick.” Lacey’s voice is just so…different. Their latest album, Memento Mori, is one I can listen to over and over and not tire of it.

Then things got weird. My brothers’ (and friends’) tastes in music severely influenced mine. Seeing AFI on the VH1 Top 20 Countdown on Saturday mornings could make my day. Especially with “Love Like Winter.” I wanted nothing more than to meet Davey Havok and Jade Puget.

Bullet For My Valentine followed, with Marilyn Manson not long after. “Tears Don’t Fall” by Bullet For My Valentine became my new “favorite” song.

I’m not ashamed of anything I listened to during younger years. It meant something to me at that point in time. Each listen brings back a different memory.

For the record…

My favorite song now is “Rain” by Breaking Benjamin (and has been since, oh, ninth grade?), though I have several close seconds.

My favorite music video is, and will forever be, this one (especially from 2:07 and on): The Leaving Song Pt. II

Now I listen to anything and everything.

Pop can in the shower

My bathroom is a calm brown with blue accents (towels, baskets, candle holders, etc.). Technically, I share it with my three older brothers, but since one of them doesn’t even live here anymore and the other two are usually off at college, I call it my own. I keep it clean and orderly…sometimes. There may be coffee rings on the white counter and hair ties everywhere, but at least it’s clean filth. It’s not yucky boy filth.

Ever since we received a rain shower head from Mom and Dad for Christmas, showers have been delightful. Instead of a spazzy spritz of water, a nice, warm downpour erupts from every pore of the the shower head and easily washes away every bit of dirt from the body. Showers are preferable for me. I like a nice bath every now and then, but I get bored with nothing to do.

So tonight, like any other night, I took a shower once night fell. I got the water running while I used the toilet, then stripped down (don’t worry – this isn’t going to get X-Rated) and climbed into the shower and was welcomed by a spray of water at perfect shower temperature. I started by wetting my hair completely and then applying a dollop of my shampoo. While I was rinsing it out, I happened to glance up to my left at the ledge where I usually see a yellow and green sponge. Next to the sponge, I saw a pop can. Instantly I knew which brother was the culprit.

My first thought was: I wonder if there’s anymore pop left? (I checked and it was empty.)

My second thought was: Ugh, I HATE it when the boys come home and trash the bathroom!

My third thought was: Now I’m going to have to add that can to the recyclables as if it’s my mess!

My fourth thought was: Wow, I’m actually kind of thirsty. It would be nice to have a grape pop right now.

My fifth thought was: Oh my gosh, what a genius idea!
I went from being totally disgusted to being totally amazed. If I had been Adam (whom I am sure was the culprit), I would have set my unfinished pop on the counter in the bathroom and then commenced my shower. But Adam – being Adam – couldn’t have that. He took his unfinished pop into the shower with him and simply set it on the top ledge, away from any excess water. Imagine how refreshing it must have been to take a swig of a nice cold cola (though I do not like cola) during a hot shower. Adam constantly catches me off guard with these really simple ideas that I would never even think to do.

Maybe next time I’ll take my unfinished can of pop in with me so I can enjoy it in the shower.

But here it comes again

Right now Mother Nature is displaying my favorite kind of weather: rain. And it’s not that yucky cold rain that makes everything look miserable – it’s of the nice spring variety; my favorite. It’s the kind that makes me want to sit out on the porch for hours on end. Or, at least, until it stops comin’ down.

I don’t know why, but I love the rain. It’s just something new and different after a couple of dry days. Right now I am experiencing a strong urge to tie on my bathing suit and frolic around in the falling wetness. After this long week that seems like the perfect thing to do, but I’ll never do it. Not by myself, at least. I’ll wait until I have a certain someone to frolic with.

Rain rain… go away…

It happened a few years ago. What happened? I found out what my favorite song in the entire world is. My mother and I were in our Hyundai Sonata heading for camp. I wanted to listen to Breaking Benjamin’s CD We Are Not Alone that my brother left in the car, but my mother did not. I ran through the tracks, each one beginning with a sound that was too hardcore for my mother to handle. Finally, I settled for track number eleven; the last song on the CD. All we heard was the strumming of an acoustic guitar, and instantly, I fell in love. Breaking Benjamin’s “Rain” is my most favorite song.

Take the photograph,
It’ll be the last,
Not a dollar or a crowd could ever keep me here,

I don’t have a past
I just have a chance,
Not a family or honest plea remains to say,

Rain rain go away,
Come again another day,
All the world is waiting for the sun.

Is it you I want,
Or just the notion of
a heart to wrap around so I can find my way around

Safe to say from here,
You’re getting closer now,
We are never sad cause we are not allowed to be

Rain rain go away,
Come again another day,
All the world is waiting for the sun.

Rain rain go away,
Come again another day,
All the world is waiting for the sun.

To lie here under you,
Is all that I could ever do,
To lie here under you is all,
To lie here under you is all that i could ever do,
To lie here under you is all,

Rain rain go away,
Come again another day,
All the world is waiting for the sun.

Rain rain go away,
Come again another day,
All the world is waiting for the sun,
All the world is waiting for the sun,
All the world is waiting for the sun.

Oh, how it gives me chills.

Visiting the bro

For the past two summers, my eldest brother has been writing for The Chautauquan Daily newspaper that is distributed by little paper boys all across The Chautauqua Institution. Other than the snobby, old rich people, I actually would not mind living there.

Last summer we visited him at his job and went on a walk all around one side of the Institution. The sky started dropping raindrops (of course), but we kept going, letting our two dogs pull us along by their leashes. Despite the horrible weather, I found every aspect of the Institution absolutely gorgeous.

This year we visited again, walking along on the red brick and gazing in awe at some of the beautiful old homes. Again, it started raining while we were there. At first I braved the rain, letting the hood of my hoodie soak up the wetness, but then it became too much for me to handle. My dad gave me the umbrella he had been holding for me, and I put it up, instantly relieved by the dryness. Everywhere we looked, there were pretty houses and beautiful mansions. We passed a few houses that were erected this past winter of ’08; houses that didn’t even exist when we visited last year.

The snobby people that live there ignored us, so we ignored them. We walked and walked and walked, looking left and right at the architecture. We passed the Opera house and visited the Rain Garden outside of the theater building. We visited the Amphitheater again and listened to the Chautauqua Choir for a little while. I still find the Amphitheater amazing.

If I lived in the Institution, I would want to own a small cottage near the lake, overlooking the water. I would walk and ride my bike everywhere, and would go to the Amphitheater daily. Maybe I would try going to the Opera, but I would probably end up covering my ears and running out.

Our visits there have been pleasant – despite the heavy rainfall. Hopefully some Sunday we will go there WITHOUT rain following behind us.

Early Morning Fear

This morning I was rudely awakened by a huge crackling of thunder. My heart’s beat instantly sped up, and I could not seem to calm myself down. I glanced over at my clock, and the angry red digits told me that it was 4:42 in the morning. Do not get me wrong, I LOVE thunderstorms, just not the kind where the thunder sounds like it could come into my room and possibly kill me. You know, that horrible kind where it sounds like a huge piece of glass is shattering into a million little pieces.

The first thing I did was pull the covers up over my head in an attempt to drown out the awful noise. This, however, did not help in the least. After an ear-splitting eruption of thunder, I quickly got up and shut my window and the blinds before the lightning warned me of the thunder’s arrival once again. Every time the lightning flashed, I would hurriedly place my hands over my ears so that I would not let the thunder scare me like it did the first time.

Horror movies I have seen invaded my thoughts, and I found that I could no longer be calm without a light on. Every time the lightning flashed, I was sure someone would be standing over me, knife in hand. After another crackling of thunder, I quickly reached up and pushed the switch in on the lamp on my bedside table. The warm, soft yellow light instantly calmed me. This, however, did not stop the horrid thunder from scaring the bajeebers out of me every time it went off.

Finally, a solution to my problem came to me. I quickly jumped out of bed and grabbed my earbuds out of the open pocket on my purse. I then took my iPod (named Pandora) off of her home and connected the earbuds to her. I knew exactly what band was going to help me through in my time of need. I scrolled down to Panic At The Disco’s new album Pretty. Odd. and put the left earbud in my left ear. I then laid my head down so that my right ear was pressed into my pillow, blocking out any other sound that might wish to invade (the thunder). Every time the lightning flashed, I was ready to endure another crackling of thunder, Pandora by my side.

“I know it’s sad that I never gave a damn about the weather, and it never gave a damn about me.” As I listened to Do You Know What I’m Seeing? by Panic, I grew sort of nervous. Call me stupid, but I was wondering if the thunder could hear what I was listening to, and was insulted. I actually considered putting my iPod away, for fear that the lightning would enter my room and strike me. I quickly shook that thought away, for it was simply illogical.

Brendon Urie’s voice blocked out the thunder for me. I survived the early morning thunderstorm thanks to him.

Oxymorons

Today I decided to lay out in the sun for awhile. Not because I wanted to get super tan (I really do not see the point in changing the color of one’s skin, and I will never pay to go tanning), but because the sun was so appealing. I changed into my bathing suit, and approached the diving board, preparing to jump in just so the sun could have something to make evaporate.

I splashed into the cool, turquoise pool, and surfaced gasping for breath. It is not a good idea to swim with gum in your mouth, let me tell you. My feet touched the solid bottom of the shallow end, and I slowly walked over to the stairs. It is funny how you don’t feel just how cold the wind is until you are totally wet. I felt like someone was up in the sky purposely blowing cold air on me, attempting to dry me off. I lay down on the lounge, and closed my eyes, enjoying the gentle warmth of the sun. The wind continued to blow, but the sun continued to shine.

After my mother got off the phone (she was outside talking on it for almost three hours), she went inside, and then all was quiet except for the raging wind. I got up to lean the back of the lounge back further so I could lay down on my stomach, exposing my back to the relentless sun. While I was lying there, I was thinking about how it rained yesterday morning. At first it did not strike me – but then it did. A rainy Sunday. Why, that is an oxymoron!!! Now, every Sunday that it rains, I shall be thinking about that and smiling. I never really thought of it before.

I like that oxymoron, but my favorite will forever be: smart man.